Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Pride of Madeira

with 3 comments

I’m seeing a lot of these in Pacific Grove:

The Monterey County Herald:

First and foremost is the perennial shrub called pride of Madeira, Echium candicans or Echium fastuosum, which sports gorgeous cone-shaped flower spikes this time of year. You’ll see these plants blooming profusely from now through May.

Their flower spikes, each of which contains thousands of individual blossoms, attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds in droves. You’ll see them not only in blue, but in many shades of purple and lavender, as well as a dusty pink.

Pride of Madeira, which can be found in gardens and along roadsides all over the Central Coast, is native to Portugal’s Madeira Island. Because it flourishes in Mediterranean climates and likes dry conditions, it is perfectly suited to our part of California.

In fact, pride of Madeira does best when left alone, preferably in poor soil and with little water — a lazy gardener’s dream. Rich soil and too much moisture are actually detrimental to the plant and can kill it. Some sources say it doesn’t do well in clay soil, and too much shade will keep the plant from blooming.

Pride of Madeira reseeds freely and so it’s easy to get babies if you have a friend with mature plants. Plants also can be started from cuttings. They’ll require occasional water during the first summer in order to get established, but after that need little or no care.

The only caveat with pride of Madeira is that the plants tend to get very large very fast. They can easily grow 10 feet tall and 10 feet wide within two to three years. Experts recommend pruning or pinching back once or twice during the year to maintain shape and keep the plant from getting lanky.

Written by LeisureGuy

20 March 2010 at 12:26 pm

Posted in Daily life

3 Responses

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  1. hi, how do i take baby or cutting from pride of maderia, they r in full bloom, do i take from root or what?

    renee

    14 April 2010 at 6:25 pm

  2. Beats me. My thumb is not at all green. I suggest you post the question on some flower forum where yo0u’re more likely to get an answer.

    LeisureGuy

    14 April 2010 at 6:42 pm

  3. These plants spread underground by runners. You could try digging one of these up and transplanting it provided you have a place that allows you. I have not personally tried this, but I have tried to control the spread of these plants in a Bay Area garden, and they really do spread! If all else fails they are available at many nurseries. They need a lot of room.

    Tara Gill

    13 September 2010 at 9:45 pm


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